Her Big Day


A ‘magicool’ outdoor wedding.

Carla Morales and Phil Valois were eager to bring their professional talents and personal style together as they designed their June 4, 2011 wedding. And as graphic designers, no aspect of their DIY ceremony and reception was left untouched.

Carla, a house rabbit mom who designs under the name Carla Rabbit, and Phil, a graphic designer who loves goats, quickly decided on a Goat Groom and Bunny Bride theme — especially fitting since they wed in the Year of the Rabbit.

“Phil and I are makers,” says Carla, who designs with her now-husband under the moniker Reptiles+Rainbows. “We are always working on art and design projects, be it for ourselves or for a client. … Our DIY approach to the wedding is just the way we work.”

The ceremony and reception were both held at the Oak Ridge Lodge in Mount Airy Forest, tucked away from loud noise and busy streets.

“I loved the giant trees, so we set up the ceremony on the grass and used the woods as our backdrop,” Carla says of the venue. “Mount Airy Forest also has a really cool, big treehouse that I always thought would be fun for photos, so Phil and I took some of our portraits in there.” Photographer Johanna Virta captured the day. 

They transformed the outdoor venue into a “50 shades of lavender” affair with 36-inch purple balloons, tissue paper puffs and paper garlands and incorporated their style as a couple and as individuals with unique touches of rabbits and goats.

“Everything had to comply with the Goat Groom, Bunny Bride identity we created,” says Carla, “even the scent and color of the bathroom soap — lavender. We brewed two kinds of beer and designed the label on the bottles. Like the bride’s ‘Bunny Brew’ was light and sweet with traces of lavender; ‘Goat’s Milk’ was dark and heavy like Phil.” Their wedding program even doubled as a goat/bunny mask and a fan.

The ceremony commenced with a modest wedding party strolling down grass to Elvis tunes. The bridesmaids wore various hues of purple while the groomsmen wore furry Lamb’s Ear leaves on their suits. In lieu of a ring bearer, Phil and Carla had a ring bear: Carla’s five-year-old nephew wore a furry bear hat and carried the rings on two wild carrots. Phil wore a hand-died bowtie courtesy of local design studio, Brush Factory. And then Carla made her entrance in a short Anna Sui gown with gold glitter Vivienne Westwood plastic heels.

“My first (and only) stop was at Anna Sui, one of my longtime favorite designers and the inspiration behind our black and lavender wedding colors,” Carla says. Her hair was a work of art all its own, styled by Jessie Hoffman of Parlour salon, with a real rabbit skull attached to a gold netting birdcage fascinator Carla made herself.

Before the walk down the aisle, Carla was eager, not anxious. “My sisters couldn’t believe how calm I was,” she says. “I wasn’t nervous at all. I couldn’t wait to walk down that grass. I remember thinking, ‘All my friends are here, my family is here, I’m about to marry Phil, let’s do this!’” The ceremony closed with “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” by the Beach Boys. 

The reception was just a hop away from the nuptial site. Guests found their table numbers listed on lavender-flavored rock candy and followed them to glass table numbers cast from numbered birthday candles, courtesy of the friends and family who created them at Brazee Street Studios, where Carla acts as visual director. The dinner was vegetarian, perfect for a rabbit and goat, and Carla’s sister baked the wedding cake, which was complimented by gelato from Dojo Gelato.

Suiting up as centerpieces were plaster goat and bunny heads with jade succulents sprouting from the eyes. “Phil and I don’t like flowers; we like plants,” says Carla, who carried a purple artichoke bouquet from H.J. Benken florist. So the groom’s mother grew and grafted each centerpiece for the event. After the guests found their tables, the new duo hit the dance floor.

“Our first dance was a swing routine to Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ crazy rendition of the classic “I Love Paris” — our rabbit’s name is Paris,” she says, “Everyone danced and sang with Sexy Time Live Band Karaoke.”  

Capping off the night with a torrential downpour, the newlyweds and their guests danced under the rain while the band continued jamming. “Those guys were so cool to keep the party rolling,” says Carla. The couple and their partygoers ended their blissful day indoors enjoying one last acoustic tune.

Local floral boutiques cultivate creative bouquets and graceful centerpieces.

Eden Floral Boutique 

Eden Floral Boutique, located in the hip neighborhood of Over-the-Rhine, is the perfect setting for a floral shop that creates fresh, modern arrangements. Molly Lay, manager and graphic designer at Eden, says, “Designing a bouquet usually starts with an idea from the bride whether it be a feel, style or color scheme — analogous reds, blush tones and peach, loose and elegant, tight and contemporary … the options are endless.” Eden has access to blooms from across the globe, and while seasonal availability is important, if a flower is rare or out of season, it just costs a little bit more to get it from there to here. Browse the boutique’s slick, contemporary website filled with floral arrangements from previous weddings and don’t miss the photos of their stunning, sparkling brooch bouquets. “It is a bunching of 75 to 300 wired brooches that are meaningful to the bride and family or are just beautiful. It’s definitely an undertaking but the results are worth it,” says Lay. 1129 Walnut St., OTR, 513-281-3336, edenfloralboutique.com.

Yellow Canary: Flowers And Event Design 

Though this floral boutique was established relatively recently (in 2007), it has cemented itself as a trusted floral and detail-oriented event designer in Cincinnati. Yellow Canary’s floral designs are often grand and elegant — at times oversized and bold and in other instances more natural, reminiscent of moss and other beautiful elements that could have been gathered from the exterior of a hobbit’s home. Owner Kristen Sekowski welcomes a bride’s vision and helps her create a style all her own. “I would say that 99.9 percent of the time we create something completely unique,” says Sekowski. “I hesitate to copy a style because I think each bouquet should be special and speak to the style of the bride.” She recalls one of her favorite arrangements: a head table made completely out of natural materials.  “We used succulents, moss and flowers,” she says. “It was a lot of fun and definitely unique.” 333 W. Benson St., Reading, 859-609-2020, yellowcanaryonline.com.     

Courtenay Lambert Florals 

There’s something about Courtenay Lambert Floral’s floral and event design style that you can almost pick out of a line-up, and that consistency is why brides flock to her. Lambert says, “We have thousands of pictures. We keep a portfolio on our iPad and [brides] can flip through it while they’re here, but we also have a huge blog that they can look through.” Many of her pieces feature roses and other simple buds with soft, rounded petals often arranged in subtle color ways of white, blush, coral and ivory, sometimes mixed with striking accents of saturated colors. And Lambert always makes sure she and a bride are on the same page. “Sometimes the picture that’s in their head might not be the picture that’s in my head,” shes says. “One person’s pink isn’t another person’s pink and one person’s purple isn’t another person’s purple.” So Lambert likes to pull pictures during a consultation to make sure her design meshes with the bride’s vision as perfectly as possible. 610 Main St., Covington, Ky., 859-581-3333, courtenaylambert.com.     

Inspired Floral Design 

Inspired Floral Design’s style leans toward an organic and free-flowing bohemian vibe. Their pieces are dynamic, incorporating flowers and other natural elements of varied heights and colors. And since owner/atmosphere stylist Robin Buop has had 27 years of floral and event experience, she knows what works. “Anything on the cover of Martha Stewart is normally just for the sake of the photoshoot and not a real wedding,” says Buop. “[It] will not hold up after a long day out of water.” With the growing popularity of Pinterest and other online idea sources, brides can become overwhelmed with options. In addition to inspiring images, Buop points out, “We always ask our brides to bring in photos of what they don’t like. This allows us to explain why they are attracted to a certain style.” 130 W. Sixth St., Covington, Ky., 513-370-7372.

Emily Schoettmer and Christopher Sentman’s winter wedding gets an extra dose of white.

Emily Schoettmer and Christopher Sentman’s mid-December nuptials gave a new meaning to the phrase white wedding: There were several inches of snow on the ground when they exchanged vows at St. Monica-St. George Church in Clifton — Emily even wore snow boots. 

Growing up in Troy, Ohio, the couple went to the same high school, had the same family friends through extracurricular groups and both moved to Cincinnati to attend college at the University of Cincinnati — Emily to study to medicine with the goal of becoming a pediatrician and Christopher, who was a year ahead of her, to become a chemical engineer.  

Three years into their relationship, Christopher popped the question during an intimate dinner with just the two of them at their house in Oakley. “He proposed at home on our back deck after cooking a nice dinner for me,” says Emily.  

Emily, who wanted to be surprised, wasn’t expecting a ring at that moment. The duo had talked about getting married at some point and, during the holidays, Emily would wonder if there was a ring under the tree but, she says, “I think I sort of knew that he would do it his way when he was ready.” 

When deciding on a date for the big day, Emily and Christopher took a practical approach. Because Emily was so swamped with medical school and knew she would be interviewing for residency in the spring, the couple started toying with the idea of a December wedding. “I never really thought about a winter wedding before,” says Emily, “And the more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea of a wintery kind of wedding.” 

With help from her mother and Brigid Horne-Nestor of i-do Weddings & Events in O’Bryonville, Emily started to plan, taking existing family holiday traditions into consideration. “We planned [the wedding] a week earlier than most of our family holiday get-togethers so it wouldn’t interfere with Christmas planning,” says Emily. And, despite concerns about travel and inclement weather, 100 close family and friends were able to witness Emily and Christopher’s special day — snow and all. 

“It was a really fun day,” says Emily. “It was hectic at times. I think that’s what made it all the more special — having everyone there.” 

When deciding on a theme for decorations, Emily wanted to preserve the integrity of the beautiful holiday ornamentation already going up at the church and her historic downtown reception venue, The Phoenix.  

St. Monica-St. George Church was already decorated for the advent season. “We just felt like it’s such a beautiful church on its own with the architecture and stained glass windows that any sort of decoration might’ve looked a little silly and out of place,” says Emily. And The Phoenix was also decked out for Christmas. “We really didn’t have to do a lot of decorating,” she says. “We tried to take advantage of a lot of [the existing decorations].” 

The rest of the theme and decor was chosen to create a sense of warmth. Her bridesmaids wore long, red satin dresses with a sweetheart neckline and an ivory ribbon at the waist. And Emily wore a beaded ivory Essense of Australia satin dress from Fabulous Bridal in Covington, Ky., with a wintery lace train, which her bridesmaids had to help her control in the snow. “They held [my dress] up and then very gently would drape it on the snow,” she says, “so my ridiculous snow boots were covered.” 

The bridesmaids carried bouquets from Blossoms Florist with red roses, light purple flowers and some dashes of white. And everyone in the bridal party, including the flower girls, wore fur shawls to keep warm — Emily and the girls wore white while the bridesmaids wore red. 

Before walking down the aisle, Emily and Christopher saw each other for the first time and took a moment to get their emotions together. “Seeing Christopher for the first time on our wedding day was an overwhelming moment,” says Emily. “The day just sort of flew from there.” 

And when it came time to go to the reception, Emily and Christopher were happy to let loose. “I think once we got past the wedding and on to the reception, we just wanted everyone to have a fun, good time,” she says. 

The reception featured oil lamp centerpieces from Emily’s grandfather on every table. “He had an oil lamp for every grandchild and he let me borrow all of them,” Emily says. “I think it made it really special. The oil lamps just have a really warm kind of feel to them. They were really more meaningful than I ever thought a centerpiece could be.”  

Each lamp was encircled with a wreath mimicking the bouquets — greenery peppered with red, white and purple flowers — and everyone was able to take one home as a favor.  

“It meant everything to start our lives together with our families there,” says Emily. “Family is really important to both of us so I think it’s a really great day to have both of our families there with us to celebrate.”Photos by Cindy Wagner of Wagner Photographics Additional reporting by Bethany Cianciolo

An outdoor wedding on a family farm.

For any nature-loving adventurer, an outdoor wedding wouldn’t take even five minutes to consider. And for rock climbing junkie Theresa Hughes, it took very little to realize her then-fiancé’s family farm would make the perfect wedding venue.

Now Theresa Seitz, the Dayton-native was tired of seeing so many restrictions tied to some of her possible wedding locations: closing times, required caterers, expenses and more. So on Aug. 25, she married Donald Seitz at his parents’ 50-acre Kentucky farm. “He was partial to the farm just because of all the nostalgia,” Theresa says. “He had always grown up going down there.”

 But getting married on the farm isn’t the only way the couple feeds their cravings for the outdoor world. Now residing in Cincinnati, Donald and Theresa, frequently go hiking, camping, backpacking and rock climbing, which made Caldwell Nature Preserve the perfect location for their April 2011 engagement. “He really wanted to propose outdoors because that’s kind of who we are,” says Theresa.

A designer at Interbrand, Theresa was adamant about using her own skills to get creative and start planning her wedding, even though it meant a hefty amount of work. She developed a mood board and went Pinterest-crazy to discover what type of feel she wanted to emulate. She designed her own invitations — printed with the texture of tree bark and their initials (T + D) carved in a heart — as a way to reference the oak tree they planted on Donald’s farm to symbolize their love, and she made her own lantern and grape vine table arrangements. She had a photo booth at the reception, which acted as a party favor for the guests. When it was dark enough, they lit  purple and green “wish lanterns” and released them into the sky. With the help of her husband, family and friends, she built the altar they got married on, furnished the barn and built a fence to keep the horses from roaming during the ceremony. “Between family and friends, they’re the whole reason everything worked out,” she says. “They took the extra time to help us set up everything.”

And instead of having her guests drive to a hotel for the night, they camped out under the stars at the farm.

Theresa’s V-neck wedding dress had sheer straps, lace appliqué, crystals and a scalloped bottom. “I’ve always wanted a lace dress,” she says.

But Theresa didn’t buy her dress at a bridal shop. “I went down to Reading and I was trying on all these dresses. I always heard that when you found the right dress, you would just start crying. And I wasn’t getting that,” she says. So she turned to the internet.

“I went to the vintage section and I saw this dress and I just absolutely fell in love with it,” she says. “I was definitely nervous, [but] I have this attitude about everything: If it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be.”

Theresa’s bridesmaids wore green dresses and carried white and purple bouquets. Her four-layered, white and chocolate-flavored cake was decorated with ivory icing, leaves, flowers and purple ribbon. Along the aisle, flowers overflowed mason jars, but other than that, Theresa says there weren’t many decorations. “I just thought the farm was beautiful on its own and I really didn’t think we needed to add a whole lot to it,” she says.

Looking back on her special day, Theresa says everything was surreal. “It was almost like I was in a dream,” she says. “Everything was just going by so fast.”

Her favorite part of the day? Walking down the aisle with her parents. “Both of my parents were a huge part of my life and I wanted them both to walk me down the aisle,” she says. “You can see everyone’s faces when you’re walking down the aisle and you can just tell that you’re loved.” 

Giving back brings Marissa and Damany together.

The wedding of Marissa Woodly and her now-husband Damany Abernathy was an urban affair. Inspired by a shared love of architecture, each other and giving back, the wedding was a powerful symbol of creating a home, which the duo was thrilled to do on August 4, 2012 inside Cincinnati’s Covenant-First Presbyterian Church, followed by a reception in the foyer of historic Music Hall.  

“We value our urban environment and knew we wanted to make it a downtown affair,” says Marissa. “We really value old buildings and architecture, and Music Hall is one of Cincinnati’s shining specimens of great architecture.”  

And for Marissa, the 19th-century Covenant-First Presbyterian Church represents more than just an architectural kingpin. She has served as Habitat for Humanity’s development director for almost six years, and the nonprofit’s offices were formerly housed in the basement of the church. “Every morning I would come in and have my own personal prayer and solitude,” she says. “I miss that very much — that alone time to get [my] mind right.” 

Marissa also credits Habitat for Humanity and their Raise the Roof 5K Run and Walk for meeting Damany. She was in charge of the event, and he was running the race. They had met briefly the night before the 5K at a bar on Main Street, but Marissa had to leave. “He asked me why,” she says. “I said because I had a race for Habitat in the morning. [Damany] researched it and showed up. He ran it and came in third place.” She was impressed by his effort, and it didn’t hurt that he had an attractive, competitive edge, she says. 

When the couple discovered a wedding opening at the church, they booked the date and began planning. Marissa worked independently, ordering bride magazines, scanning the pages of Pinterest and looking for new ways to add some creative flare to a conventional wedding feel. She worked to achieve a traditional, classy and romantic-style ceremony with pewter-hued dresses by Lazaro, fuchsia flowers and splashes of “bling.” Picasso calla lilies, red bull and cymbidium orchids, white hydrangea, roses and white ostrich feathers were weaved throughout her bouquet, created by The Secret Garden.  

“The entire wedding was sort of traditional, old Hollywood glamour,” she says. “It was a beautiful day all by itself. Just complementing it was all I had to do.” Her gown, designed by Manuel Mota for Pronovias, was layered with feathers. “I just felt so good in it,” Marissa says.   

During the ceremony, Marissa and her husband celebrated with an eternity box, constructed by Marissa’s coworkers at Habitat for Humanity. It was pieced together from salvaged, old-home hardware that Habitat had stored in one of its warehouses. “We found some antique, crystal doorknobs and an old bronze doorbell that has to date back to the turn of the century,” she says. “They affixed them to a 100-year-old Remington 12-gauge shotgun shell box.”  

The box was filled with love letters, their favorite wine and encouraging letters from their parents. “It’s so special to have all these pieces of the past put together to represent our future,” says Marissa. “We get to open the box on our fifth anniversary, read our letters, drink our wine and replenish the box with new letters, or maybe art from our future kids. We’ll repeat this every five years as long as we live.”  

After the wedding, the couple celebrated in Music Hall’s foyer with a signature cocktail (the Mr. and Mrs. Abernathy), a candy bar and a four-tiered cake by Sweet Water Bakehouse with a cookies and cream layer, a spice cake layer with apple butter filling, a strawberry layer and a carrot cake layer. Marissa handmade the cake topper out of feathers and a rhinestone brooch. Guests also enjoyed a live photo shoot, orchestrated by the Digital Hype Group. An L-shaped, scrolled white couch and shimmery curtains served as the background, and guests were able to take their photos home. Airwave Band played smooth tunes and sultry riffs, while still keeping the atmosphere lively and fun. When the night ended, the newly married couple had a sparkler send-off in a horse-drawn carriage. 

“We were able to just have a moment and take it all in,” says Marissa. After spending an entire day with 180 guests, Marissa says one of her favorite parts was walking with her father down the aisle, who had torn both of his knees and suffered through knee-replacement surgery just months before. “Time sort of stood still,” she says. “He didn’t have a cane. You wouldn’t even have known that just three months earlier, he was barely moving around.” Marissa says her father and mother have shown her and Damany how to make a healthy marriage successful.  

The couple doesn’t plan on leaving Cincinnati anytime soon. “People in Cincinnati are good and they care about each other, and they have somewhat traditional and conservative values,” Marissa says, “and there’s nothing wrong with that.”  

Marissa continues to bubble from excitement when looking back on her special day with her soulmate. “I’m just looking forward to making my home with [Damany] for the rest of my life. That has been and will continue to be a theme in our relationship,” she says. “I feel really strongly that we’re going to be together forever.”

Design house PARIS crafts exquisite bridal adornments.

Bridal accessory designer Debra Moreland’s Northside studio, PARIS, looks clean and angular from the outside. A black roof caps the white, one-story building. The doors, marked in black and gold cursive font open to reveal faint piano music echoing off the interior cement walls.

Inside, the studio space is lined with ornately framed mirrors and display cases exhibiting handmade bridal accessories: beaded belts; barefoot sandals; hand-sewn, embroidered veils; gem encrusted tiaras; and pearl-set broaches — all priced anywhere from $150 to $3,000. 

Moreland, a graduate of the Art Academy of Cincinnati, is the six-time winner of the “Bridal Accessory Designer of the Year” award. Her work has been featured on Vera Wang’s runway and she has designed headbands worn by stars like Taylor Swift and Giuliana Rancic.  

Her assistant, Carol Radin, greets me in the entryway with a zesty handshake. We walk down the hall together and stop in front of Moreland’s office. Radin knocks, opens the door an inch, and then walksinside. I follow her lead. 

Moreland sits behind her desk and wears a black button-up shirt tucked into a black skirt. Her medium-length hair is dark and cut in an Edith-Head-meets-Coco-Chanel style (fittingly so, as these she lists these twowomen as artistic influences). Her eyes rest behind black plastic frame glasses. Her office is dark and windowless. Yellow lights illuminate dancing ceramic figurines in her display case, along with the cheetah print carpeting that covers the floor. 

She rubs her temples and laughs with Radin, who sits next to me, before she recalls a memory from her first wedding in 1972. She tells me that she wore a white eyelet dress and what she describes as a “tall, green Russian hat.”  

She had wanted to wear a small, green wreath with rosebuds, but what she saw on the day of her wedding wasn’t exactly what she had imagined. Moreland and her florist attempted to turn the hat into a wreath by ripping off the top, but their efforts didn’t achieve the look Moreland was going for. “Basically I wore a coat hanger that had some tufts of tulle on it and three rosebuds in the back. I was horrified,” she says. “The wedding pictures don’t even do it justice; the wreath doesn’t look half as bad in photos as it did in real life.” 

And although she may have felt less-than-perfect during her first wedding, Moreland says that the mishap partially shaped her future career venture as a bridal accessory designer. Moreland designed her first bridal headpiece at the request of her sister-in-law in 1989. 

Because she had studied sculpture and painting in school, Moreland was able to craft a custom piece that the bride wouldn’t have been able to find in stores. Remembering the hat from her first wedding and noticing the lack of wedding accessories in the bridal market, Moreland started custom designing headpieces out of her home. She quickly realized her knack for both producing functional art and running a business, so she opened a store in the Reading Bridal district.  

Since then, Moreland has expanded her business to Northside, where she owns a studio space that used to be a costume jewelry factory. And while the amount of accessories Moreland has designed is in the thousands, the commercial jewelry-making process is nothing short of planning for a wedding. 

When inspiration hits her (oftentimes when she’s sleeping) she first sketches out an idea. Then she creates prototypes for each piece by pinning jewels and metalwork to a block of Styrofoam. Once she has the basic design pinned down, she works with engineers who streamline the jewelry to make it easier to replicate and more economical.  

When an order for a specific piece comes in, one of Moreland’s eight or nine artisans replicate the initial prototype and then string every pearl, set every crystal and attach every clasp by hand. After the piece is complete (sometimes up to a month after it’s ordered), it’s packaged and sent out in the mail.  

In addition to the two collections a year she produces for her store, she also designs pieces for Anthropologie’s vintage-inspired bridal line, BHLDN. “We’ve designed about 150 things for the store,” says Moreland. “They totally get my style, and they have such a following.” 

Her most popular PARIS designs include hand-painted veils and bridal headpieces, but her creative pieces are beautifully successful as well. Her heirloom-quality cake jewelry redefines the traditional “bride and groom” cake toppers by incorporating whimsical florals, crowns and Swarovski crystals. And her barefoot sandals, which are jeweled and chained pieces that wrap around the ankle and toe, provide an ornate alternative to heels or flats. 

After years of hard work, Moreland’s place in the bridal industry is as set as the ring on her left hand. If you’re interested in purchasing or ordering a PARIS design for your big day, visit paristiaras.com.

These fanciful hairpieces defy tradition.

Hats off to the latest trend in bridal wear: the fascinator. 

Ever since Prince William and Kate Middleton’s Royal Wedding (and actress Elizabeth Banks’ portrayal of Effie Trinket in The Hunger Games), fascinators have gained popularity with celebrities and commoners alike. These elaborately trimmed formal hairpieces, worn off to the side or front of the forehead, can be architectural and avant-garde in appearance when made of cast lace or giant dried flowers (creating a small, surreal forest on your head), or fun and fanciful when constructed with feathers and ribbon.  

With so many different styles of fascinators, everyone from guests to the bride herself can wear the look, playing on themes from vintage to bizarre. Fascinators are a great way for brides who don’t want a traditional veil to add a touch of elegance while still looking unique.  

With backgrounds in architecture and engineering, purveyors of wearable art, Catherine Richards and Anh Tran of Cincinnati-based Hark+Hark designs, create custom fascinators worthy of your big day.

“Fascinators can add extravagance to any special day and are the perfect punctuation mark to give your hair a designed look,” says Richards. “We think a fascinator hair piece has more style and structure versus a veil that tends to conceal ones features and identity. Fascinators do the opposite — working to accentuate your personality and reveal your beauty.” 

For custom designs, Richards and Tran recommend a consultation at least three months in advance with a fitting to make sure the fascinator works with your hair and dress.  

Find Hark+Hark fascinators at Parlour salon in East Walnut Hills, where owner and stylist Jessie Hoffman will create bridal hairstyles that work well with your fascinator and highlight your overall look. Because, according to Hoffman, another advantage of fascinators is that they can remain in your hair after the ceremony, unlike veils, which are usually removed for the reception. With fascinators, you can keep your bridal look all night long! 

How To Wear A Fascinator: 

  1. Have your hair styled (or style yourself) into an up-do or partial up-do. 
  2. Orient the fascinator in the direction that works best for the hair. Again, fascinators are most commonly worn to the front or side of the head. For inspiration, check out the front-of-the-head style Victoria Beckham wore to the Royal Wedding, or images of musician Rihanna as she frequently wears sculptural fascinators to events and in music videos. (If you’re weary of fascinators, avoid images of Lady Gaga donning them, especially the meat one.) 
  3. Secure the fascinator with the comb underneath or use bobby pins to hold it in place.

Photos by Susan Keller and Johanna Virta.